Friday, May 18, 2018

How to go camping with your dog (a guest post)

Photo by Heather Mount on Unsplash
Dogs are friendly, energetic animals that love nothing more than the call of the wilderness. Much like us humans, they enjoy being around nature (some dogs more than others, such as the Blue Nose Pitbull), jumping and running around, enjoying the freedom a forest or a waterfall gives you. This is why going outside the city for a while is great, not only for your furry best friend, but for yourself as well. It helps you connect with nature, bond with your dog, and get rid of daily life’s stress.

But, before picking up your camping gear and your dog and going on a great adventure, there are some things that you need to know first. They mostly have to do with your dog’s safety and well-being, so keep on reading to know more!

Photo by Savs on Unsplash

1.    Assess your dog’s personality

In the end, some dogs are just not made for camping. They’re either not great in the outdoors or are too aggressive to be around other pets and children. So, before going on a camping vacation with your best friend, make a honest assessment of his personality, and decide for yourself if camping suits him!

2.    Look for dog-friendly campsites

Not all campsites welcome dogs (even though they should, honestly), so make sure to do your research first before choosing a place. There is nothing worse than arriving to the site you’ve chosen and spotting a giant “No dogs allowed” sign at the entrance. So, do your homework, and look around camping forums to know where to go. 

Photo by Patrick Hendry on Unsplash
BringFido is a website where you can research dog-friendly campsites all around the world. Knowledge is only one click away, so make sure to use it!

3.    Make sure your dog is trained correctly

You might think your dog is well-trained, but is he “camp-trained”? This might come as a surprise, but just because your pooch is behaving at home, it does not mean he will do the same as soon as you arrive to the wilderness. Dogs are curious creatures, and yours will want to go around and discover his surroundings. They will go out of their way to satisfy their curiosity, which is why your dog should know campsite etiquette.

Your dog should be able to come as soon as you call him, either using his name or a dog whistle, and that, even if there are distractions around. The best place to train him to do that is at the dog park. In the end, when it comes to training your dog on campsite etiquette, the best thing is positive reinforcement. If you make your dog actually want to listen to you, then you’ve made it all!

4.    Take him to the vet before your trip

Taking a short trip to the vet never hurts, especially before a camping trip. Your best friend’s doctor will let you know if there are any special precautions you would have to take and will make sure that all your dog’s vaccines are up to date. The veterinarian can also help you make a list of what to take in your pet’s first aid kit instead of emergencies, which takes us to the next point.

5.    Always be ready for emergencies

You can do that by making a card that has important information on it, such as your address, your dog’s health history etc… You will also need to make sure that your dog’s tags are up to date, as well as his microchip. And finally, don’t forget to purchase a pet’s first aid kit, or make your own.

6.    Choose the right water and food bowls

Collapsible bowls are all the rage right now, and it’s understandable why. They’re practical, light, and easy to use. So, make sure to bring a couple for your dog’s food and water. Carrying them won’t be a problem, as they tend not to be heavy at all. Have some water on you at all time as well, since dogs need to be hydrated frequently, especially if you’re camping on hot summer days.

7.    Finally, don’t forget to have fun

Photo by Wyatt Ryan on Unsplash
Whether you’re the proud parent of a Great Dane or of a Husky Lab mix, camping with your dog will not always be an easy task, but it will be an enjoyable one. So, make sure to have a blast during your camping trip, and always take care of your dog!


Writer’s photo


Writer’s bio:

Hi, I'm Houda, a fulltime writer, traveler, and self-proclaimed dog person. I also make lame jokes, write poetry, and love eating weird food in faraway countries. Did I mention that I was a dog person? Yeah, give me all the puppies please.

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